Quiet Title Action

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Related to Quiet title: Quiet Title Lawsuit

Quiet Title Action

A proceeding to establish an individual's right to ownership of real property against one or more adverse claimants.

An action to quiet title is a lawsuit filed to establish ownership of real property (land and buildings affixed to land). The plaintiff in a quiet title action seeks a court order that prevents the respondent from making any subsequent claim to the property. Quiet title actions are necessary because real estate may change hands often, and it is not always easy to determine who has title to the property.

A quiet title suit is also called a suit to remove a cloud. A cloud is any claim or potential claim to ownership of the property. The cloud can be a claim of full ownership of the property or a claim of partial ownership, such as a lien in an amount that does not exceed the value of the property. A title to real property is clouded if the plaintiff, as the buyer or recipient of real estate, might have to defend her full ownership of the property in court against some party in the future. A landowner may bring a quiet title action regardless of whether the respondent is asserting a present right to gain possession of the premises.

For example, assume that the seller of the property agreed to sell but died before the sale was finalized. Assume further that the seller also gave the property to a nephew in a will. In such a situation, both the nephew and the buyer have valid grounds for filing a suit to quiet title because each has a valid claim to the property.

The law on quiet title actions varies from state to state. Some states have quiet title statutes. Other states allow courts to fashion most of the laws regarding quiet title actions. Under the Common Law, a plaintiff must be in possession of the property to bring a quiet title action, but many state statutes do not require actual possession by the plaintiff. In other states possession is not relevant. In some states only the person who holds legal title to the real estate may file a quiet title action, but in other states anyone with sufficient interest in the property may bring a quiet title action. Generally, a person who has sold the property does not have sufficient interest. When a landowner owns property subject to a mortgage, the landowner may bring a quiet title action in states where the mortgagor retains title to the property. If the mortgagee keeps the title until the mortgage is paid, the mortgagee, not the landowner, would have to bring the action.

The general rule in a quiet title action is that the plaintiff may succeed only on the strength of his own claim to the real estate, and not on the weakness of the respondent's claim. The plaintiff bears the burden of proving that he owns the title to the property. A plaintiff may have less than a fee simple, or less than full ownership, and maintain an action to quiet title. So long as the plaintiff's interest is valid and the respondent's interest is not, the plaintiff will succeed in removing the cloud (the respondent's claim) from the title to the property.


Cloud on Title.

quiet title action

n. a lawsuit to establish a party's title to real property against anyone and everyone, and thus "quiet" any challenges or claims to the title. Such a suit usually arises when there is some question about clear title, there exists some recorded problem (such as an old lease or failure to clear title after payment of a mortgage), an error in description which casts doubt on the amount of property owned, or an easement used for years without a recorded description. An action for quiet title requires description of the property to be "quieted," naming as defendants anyone who might have an interest (including descendants---known or unknown---of prior owners), and the factual and legal basis for the claim of title. Notice must be given to all potentially interested parties, including known and unknown, by publication. If the court is convinced title is in the plaintiff (the plaintiff owns the title), a quiet title judgment will be granted which can be recorded and thus provide legal "good title." Quiet title actions are a common example of "friendly" lawsuits in which often there is no opposition. (See: title, cloud on title, notice)

References in periodicals archive ?
A quiet title action is a lawsuit to resolve disputes over the real property's title and thus "quiet" any challenges or claims to the title.
After that, he said he initiated the quiet title process to identify any other partial owners to pay them their fair share for the land.
Armendariz filed a response, arguing that Jarboe was not entitled to an award of attorney fees because the Britts' quiet title proceeding and Armendariz's appeal of the appraisers' award were both still pending.
A cautious D will advise C that C must either substantially reduce his sale price based on the risks D will take if he has to base his claim to clear title on applicability of the Rule of Shelter or get a quiet title judgment against A that holds that C was a bona fide purchaser and that A's unrecorded interest is inferior to the rights of a transferee from C under the Shelter Rule.
The Ninth Circuit agreed with the lower court that the Tribe's quiet title action (against both the state and its officers) was barred by the Eleventh Amendment, because a quiet title action necessarily determines ownership interests and thus would impair the state's claimed interest.
Although the State theoretically could still go to state court and seek to quiet title, such a ruling would have no practical effect unless the U.
County officials said three property owners have sought quiet title to correct boundary lines: Harvey; Janice and Tom Thelen; and Sheila and Gary Epstein.
07401(4) and due process; (3) whether the Court should enter final judgment dismissing the claims asserted in the Action with prejudice; (4) whether all Released Claims against the Released Persons should be fully and finally released; (5) whether the Court should recognize and quiet title to all outstanding shares and options of Vitacost stock on certain recognized dates; (6) whether to recognize and deem valid the Company's certificate of incorporation; (7) whether the payment of Counsels' attorneys' fees and expenses in the amount of $3.
Instead, lenders retroactively assert deceleration in the lender's second foreclosure action or the borrower's action to quiet title.
One month later, the non-signing member of Company B brought an action to quiet title.
Oregon Department of State Lands: Plaintiff seeks quiet title order for .
According to the Court of Appeals of Washington, an action to quiet title against the government is not barred if the ten-year statute of limitations ran while the property was in private hands.